The Bedtime Trick Holly Ryan Swears By to Help Manage Her Stress and Anxiety
Welcome to Bedtime Stories, an interview series where we ask inspiring individuals to share their nighttime routine and sleep secrets – from the beauty products they can’t live without to the tricks they swear by when they’re too tired to function (no coffee needed). For this instalment, jewellery designer and artist Holly Ryan, reveals the calming bedtime routine that helps her get quality sleep so she's able to spring out of bed every morning at 6am - without fail - to watch the sunrise.
Before many of us have even had our morning coffee, Holly Ryan has watched the sunrise, gone for a stroll with her dog, taken a morning dip (or climbed a mountain) and meditated so she's energised enough to power through her working day.
The Australian artist and founder of Holly Ryan Jewellery is living proof of how a consistent and healthy morning routine can lead to success. Known for her intricate and sustainability-focused jewellery pieces, Ryan has also gained a reputation for her unique sculptural artworks (with her works even appearing in the pages of international publications including Vogue and Harpers Bazaar).
But juggling her art and business is no easy feat, which is why she knows she needs to be completely focused and motivated during the day. To achieve this, she has created a strict bedtime routine that helps alleviate her stress and anxiety so she gets quality snooze every night, leaving her feeling her absolute best in the morning.
Here, Bed Threads Journal sat down with the successful creative to find out everything about her night and morning routine.
Hi Holly! Welcome to Bedtime Stories. Can you walk us through your bedtime routine?
Most nights I am in bed by around 9-9.30pm. I have a sleep schedule set on my phone for 10pm-6am so I don't receive notifications during that time. I find this incredibly helpful for me in terms of managing my stress and anxiety.
I also love to read before bed as this not only helps lull me to sleep, but it always seems to make me dream more.
What sleep or beauty products do you swear by that you won’t go a night without?
I have a lavender pillow spray that my friend's mum made me, which I love to spritz my pillow with before I head to bed.
Another scent that also calms me for bed is my Ayu Sage oil. I apply this oil after my shower.
I take a bath full of oils, burn incense - I love the ones from Dutchie Scents and also use a Nepalese rope incense - and play some jazz with the lights off. This generally puts me in a trance and all technology must be switched off in my room when I return.
If that doesn't work, melatonin or Indica CBD really help me get to sleep, but I don't like to rely on them because they sometimes make me feel a little groggy in the morning and I like to bounce out of bed at about 6-6.30am to watch the sunrise.
What time does your alarm go off in the morning?
My alarm goes off at 6am because I am a sunrise junkie!
If I am working in Sydney, I take a brisk walk to Shelly Beach every morning with my golden retriever Hugo, and depending on how cold it is, I take a sunrise dip. This hit of fresh water gets me so pumped up for the day.
If I am working on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, I climb Mount Coolum to watch the sunrise and meditate at the top before taking Hugo to the beach.
What are three things (besides coffee) that help when you’re too tired to function?
I have two different morning routines I alternate between - a walk and swim or climb and meditation. These boost my energy, lift my spirits, get the blood flowing and switch my brain into action. I also love a big mug of sage tea - this is a wake-up tea that really works.
What do you normally eat for breakfast to kick start your day?
I have to admit I haven't eaten breakfast since I was about fourteen, but I make myself a coffee concoction using reishi mushroom, Orchard St cacao and oat milk that is absolutely delicious and also makes me incredibly energetic.
I eat breakfast or brunch around 11am every day and my favourites are a rainbow bowl of scrambled eggs with a selection of fermented and pickled goodness, or avocado and Promite on corn thins. (Yes, I prefer Promite over Vegemite any day - I am not ashamed!)